The amount of homes sold in Canada last month is up by 4.9% when compared to last March’s sales and up by 1% when compared to February’s sales, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA).
Although prices continue to climb with an average sales price of $401,419–up 6% from last year–data also shows that the sales are below the 10-year average, and are also below the peak set last August.
“We believe that this is due to continued low interest rates and an improving economy,” says Jeff Thibodeau, Sales Representative with RE/MAX Twin City Realty, Inc.
Though March was an improvement over February and January, CREA chief economist Gregory Klump says, “there was little evidence of a flood of pent-up demand being released.”
More than half of the markets that CREA tracks saw a sales increase in March, but the amount of new listings only rose by half a percent while the supply of homes on the market remains low.
“This means national sales are being constrained by a lack of supply despite strong demand in some markets, since Greater Toronto and Calgary combined account for a one-quarter of national activity,” according to Klump.
However, the Toronto Real Estate Board, which is a member of CREA, separately announced that there were 4,454 condos sold in the first quarter, which is up by 9% from a year ago. What’s more, the selling price also increased by 5.6% to an average of $351,213. According to TREB’s senior manager of market analysis Jason Mercer, the amount of condo apartment completions was substantially higher in 2014’s first three months, which may result in more listings during the year’s second half as some investors choose to put their units up for sale.
According to Mercer, “If this occurs, buyers would benefit from more choice in the marketplace and thus could have more negotiating power with regard to price.”